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'Never again' - Holocaust Memorial Day service takes place in Norwich

PUBLISHED: 17:19 28 January 2019

Rabbi Roderick Young of the Norwich Hebrew Congregation speaks at the Holocaust Memorial Day Service at St Peter Mancroft Church. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Rabbi Roderick Young of the Norwich Hebrew Congregation speaks at the Holocaust Memorial Day Service at St Peter Mancroft Church. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Copyright: Archant 2019

The millions of people who have been killed in genocides across the world have been remembered in a moving Holocaust Memorial Day service in Norwich.

The Lord Mayor of Norwich, Martin Schmierer, speaks at the Holocaust Memorial Day Service at St Peter Mancroft Church. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYThe Lord Mayor of Norwich, Martin Schmierer, speaks at the Holocaust Memorial Day Service at St Peter Mancroft Church. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

On Monday, members of the public joined representatives from Norwich City Council, the Jewish community and the Church of England to remember the six million Jews murdered during the holocaust along with the millions of people killed under Nazi persecution and in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

Welcoming people to St Peter Mancroft Church, Martin Schmierer, The Lord Mayor of Norwich, touched on the history of Holocaust Memorial Day, which takes place on January 27 and marks the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1945.

Stressing the importance of learning from the past, he said: “The Holocaust threatened the fabric of civilisation, and genocide must still be resisted every day. Our world often feels fragile and vulnerable and we cannot be complacent.

“Each year across the UK, thousands of people come together to learn more about the past and take action to create a safer future. By doing so, we all learn more and empathise better.”

Marie-Lyse Numuhoza speaks about surviving the Genocide in Rwanda 25 years ago, at the Holocaust Memorial Day Service at St Peter Mancroft Church. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYMarie-Lyse Numuhoza speaks about surviving the Genocide in Rwanda 25 years ago, at the Holocaust Memorial Day Service at St Peter Mancroft Church. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Rabbi Roderick Young, a member of the Norwich Hebrew Congregation and the Norwich Liberal Jewish Community echoed Mr Schmierer’s calls to remember the Shoah and learn from it.

He said: “Why did we not learn our lesson from the Shoah, why are we remembering yet more death?

“May we stumble over what we hear today and leave this service determined to do our very best so that violence disappears from the earth and home is always the sanctuary that it is meant to be.”

“Today Norwich is a welcoming home to refugees from all over the world, so there is hope but there is still much more work for each of use to do,” he said.

The theme of this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day is ‘Torn from Home’ and the congregation heard extracts from a collection of reflections on genocide from survivors as well as a moving first hand account of the Rwandan genocide from Marie-Lyse Numuhoza.

Ms Numuhoza, after sharing her story, left the congregation with the African word “ubuntu” which means humanity and respect towards others.

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